Fat Tuesday may be all about indulgence but that doesn’t mean you have to toss your health goals off that metaphorical “Big Easy” balcony. Our Functional Medicine team shares some of their favorite mouthwatering Mardi Gras recipes.

Creole and cajun foods are known to amplify flavors with the use of ingredients you may have been told to avoid – dairy fats like butter and cream (creole style) and pork fats like bacon and lard (the cajun way). While southern cuisine has been criticized for being unhealthy or bad for your heart, you can still enjoy southern style and comfort food on a healthy diet.

Faster than you can say, “Bananas Foster” these delicious dishes will put the “YAY” back in your beignets and let you live big with health-forward satisfaction!


New Orleans Jambalya has been known to make even the most sedentary taste buds jump, and Dr. Gemelas’ pick is no exception. This spicy dish is from Paleomg.com is paleo friendly (and uses Cauliflower Rice)!

Healthy Mardi Gras Recipes

Sausage with a Twist

There is perhaps never a time when sausage has not been popular. Today, more than ever, sausage is a staple in many southern dishes. Dr. Hehymeyer’s vote goes to this Easy Italian Sausage and Pepper recipe with a helpful twist, listed below.

Healthy Mardi Gras Recipes

Modify with the following:

Organic, nitrate free sausage

No bread. (Serve with mashed sweet potatoes OR polenta.)

Mashed sweet potatoes – chop, steam for 10 minutes, empty into a bowl, add 1/4 cup of coconut milk, 1tsp of cinnamon and mash with a fork

Polenta – for super easy polenta, buy organic packaged polenta at Whole Foods Market. Cut into 1 inch pieces and heat in a pan.

Cajun Collard Chips

Let the good times roll – with a crunch! We could snack on these Cajun Collard Chips year-round.

Healthy Mardi Gras Recipes

Shrimp and Grits

Our dietitian Olivia Wagner is all about dat. When it comes to celebrating southern love, we are obsessed with a “healthified” approach to shrimp and grits!!
“Normally I use riced cauliflower or celeriac and ghee, sautee shrimp with cajun spices in ghee, and then slow cook collard greens in olive oil and broth,” says Wagner.
An example of her cooking style can be found, here, in this recipe for Cauliflower Grits and Spicy Shrimp.
Healthy Mardi Gras Recipes

If you’re looking for more healthy recipes that work for you or have questions about food sensitivities or gut health, drop us line or schedule a free consultation with our Functional Medicine and Clinical Nutrition team today!